Concept of Mental Health and Disease for Practical Implementation: A Case-Based Teaching for Undergraduate Students—Part I of Basic and Applied Psychology
27 May 2020 (online)
Background Mental health has been conceptualised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as not just the absence of illness but as a state of well-being in which the individual can cope with normal stresses of life, work productively and fruitfully, and make a contribution to the community. To achieve this or to explain it to the stakeholders, a doctor needs to be well versed with the normal functioning of the human mind. Homoeopathic doctors must have this knowledge to help them understand and treat their patients or advise prevention. Lack of this knowledge in the undergraduate years fails to suitably equip them, thereby hampering their own growth and clinical functions. These papers (in two parts) will deal with the teaching of basic and applied psychology and abnormal psychology and psychiatry to homoeopathic undergraduates.
Aim The main aim of this study is to teach homoeopathic undergraduate students the basic psychological concepts required for understanding human behaviour through cased based presentations
Methodology Plan of teaching psychology to undergraduate students with a case-based approach was formulated by the Psychiatric Department of Dr. M.L. Dhawale Homoeopathic Institute (MLDMHI), Palghar. Postgraduate students prepared topics with the help of a lesson plan template under the guidance of faculty. Peer evaluation along with student feedback helped to gauge the impact of the lectures and to design improvements.
Results Thirteen topics, one each week, covered the assigned portion for basic psychology. Reports of around 30 students and 2 lecturers for each lecture over 3 years were evaluated. These indicated satisfaction with contents and desire to have more such lectures. Multiple choice questions post lectures allowed to identify the changes in knowledge and interest of students in the subject.
Discussion Basic and comprehensive knowledge of psychology will allow students/physicians to look at the cases not only from the view point of physical antecedents but also from a more holistic and comprehensive point of view.
Conclusion Educational ethos demands the incorporation of case-based teaching in undergraduates especially in the teaching of psychology, to expose the shades of normal and abnormal states of mind through case-based teachings.
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